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Public district
Decatur, GA
Students enrolled: 1,474

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2863 Kelley Chapel Rd
Decatur, GA 30034

(678) 874-1902
(678) 874-1910
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Map of Southwest Dekalb High School address.

October 30, 2014
This school has changed tremendously in only a few months. We are under new leadership and the principal has already rolled up his sleeves and began the arduous task of taking a school to the top. The atmosphere has improved dramatically and the students are more motivated. There are several programs to learn about through the school which help to increase academic achievement as well as social skills. My daughter is a freshman and is a member of the marching band which is also on the up and up. Changes are quickly taking place and I'm more than happy to be on board and an involved parent and community member!

- submitted by a parent

July 27, 2014
Exciting facilities to support our talented students. Southwest DeKalb High School has recently completed construction on the 83,816-square-foot Fine Arts Center and renovations. The new wing includes a 640-seat auditorium and a two-story block with 31 instructional classrooms, including computer, math and science labs; special education rooms; chorus, drama and band rooms to accommodate 300 students; and an amphitheater.

- submitted by a parent

November 01, 2011
Excellent place to be. Lots of top scholars at Universities come from here the children are the cream of the crop!

- submitted by a parent

January 18, 2009
My personal observation is the staff and the adminstration don't always put the students education first. It is sad but I realize it is my responsiblity to make sure my kids get what they need. Mr. Prince appears to be weak and very disrepected. In times like these we need a strong leader. There is more to life than SWD band and the nasty dancing divas. I am impressed with the magnet program and encourage them.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
January 12, 2009
This school is average. There are some administrators and teachers that hide some of the things that go on so the reputation can be protected. My daughter goes there and had done pretty well but it has taken a serious amount of monitoring the school and teachers to keep her on track. Not to say this school is better or worse than others including private but it is up to the child and parents to get you kid through with a chance at a decent future. If I had the opportunity I would have taken her to another school that focused more on truly helping kids be the best they can be.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
January 12, 2009
My daughter was a transfer student from Cedar Grove Middle. She was in the magnet program at both Cedar Grove and Southwest. The teachers have been exceptional. My daughter has maintained 4.0 average the four years in attendance at Southwest. She is graduating this year and I feel that she has been well prepared to venture into her college experience thanks to the teachers and administration of Southwest.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
January 11, 2009
this is a terible school the safety is horrible the teachers are worse and the princple Mr. prince is scared of every student there overall this school could be much better

- submitted by a student

May 02, 2008
I graduated from Swd in 2007. Since i was in the magnet program i really can not comment on the other classes ,but i can review the school in general.The administration needs help, there are a few exceptions but overall a lot of people need to lose their jobs. As a student i always felt like they looked at me as a bad apple, they look at every student that way and expect every student to be up to no good.A lot of teachers are subpar aswell, but in conclusion if i had kids i wouldnt them there but if i had no other choice i wouldn't be greatly upset.

- submitted by a student

March 30, 2008
great school my daughter had a great time and excelled, would recommend. it's better than chamblee because i sent my daughter there and she hated it. they would try to throw her out if she got a c and thats crazy, give a child some time to grow!!!

- submitted by a parent

March 28, 2008
This is an excellent school my daughter graduated in 2005 with great accomplishments and is about to graduate from college.My son is a student there now and has received great honors for academic achievements .

- submitted by a parent
no rating
January 28, 2008
SWD is more than just the band and the football team. Personally as a student who has been apart of the band I think they aren't that good, but the academics are really good. Students can get the instruction that they need during the day magnet or not. You should send your child there even though the administration isn't that great......

- submitted by a student

January 18, 2008
SWD is a great school. Of course, some things have changed since I was there in 2001, but what school hasn't changed. I work in the Stephenson High school district and that school has changed (and I'm not talking about for the better). Instead of pulling our kids out of schools and moving them to 'other districts,' lets address the problems. I read a lot of reviews from parents on here, but I don't recall seeing this kind of participation at the board meetings and PTA meetings. If the concerned parents are not addressing the issues, then they will forever be 'issues.'

- submitted by a teacher

September 17, 2007
I am an 2007 alumni of SWD.. Despite the lack of classrooms and teachers, SWD has always gave the best education from the best and experienced teachers. SWD is nothing but a big family.

- submitted by a student

February 11, 2007
Yes the band is good, football team, NJROTC, and the magnet program, but SWD has much more to offer. The school just needs more positive role models and student leaders to take it to another level!!!

- submitted by a student

November 27, 2006
This school has one of the greatest Band and extra curricular activities programs around. However, I tend to agree with others that the academics and the learning environment are not up to par. Classes are over crowded, teachers are either afraid or non-sympathetic toward the students. When my children were attending I was told of all the horrors that go on in the school and we decided to move them to another area. My oldest daughter was in the marching band and was disappointed to have to leave it but, she understood.

- submitted by a parent

May 04, 2006
This is only my first year at SWD and i must admit the school has, but depspite things going on at the school the staff and students do the best they can with what they have. There isnt an extremely serious gang problem at the school. I must admit there are gangs at the school but you will probably find gangs in every public school in metro atlanta. There are few teachers that dont care, half teh teachers i've had this year at SWD i couldnt stand but i know everything that i hated about them was to used to make me a better student so i cant say the teachers dont care. I dont know much about the administartors and counselors helping with college, but as an administrator it is not a requirement they have other things to tend to(if they dont). It does seem like counselers try and help.

- submitted by a student

April 03, 2006
I am a current student at Southwest Dekalb. Although many of the struggles the school has faced are apparent we have continued to make it through. There are many faculty and staff present at the school that care about our futures. Many stay well after the official school day has ended to make sure things are running smoothly. There is always someone willing to lend a helping hand, and it s because of some of the faculty that I myself made it through this year. And not once since I transferred to Southwest, from my previous school, have I felt unsafe or that my life was at risk at any time. Everyone there does the best they can with what they have, because the county board of education doesn t. Many teachers prepare most of our daily class activities with funds from their own pockets, without the help of anyone. Our administrative team does care regardless of some individuals opinions. They make sure we re alright beyond the classroom. And when an administrator shows enough concern about you getting into college, even though that isn t in their job description, that shows a lot about one s character. So before some judges Southwest off rumors, hearsay, and the media come take a look for yourself. Even though we re a little rough around the edges, Southwest is one of the best schools here, and we should get our overdue respect!

- submitted by a student

March 14, 2006
As a graduate of the class of 2005, I think the school is just fine. The so called outrageous behavior and gang related activities never happenend in the four years me or my younger brother have attended the school. The caliber of teachers that the school provides is top notch. Sure there are the few teachers that don't teach well, but many of the others far out shine those insignificant few. The quality of extracurricular activities is also good. The band, NJROTC program, and various sports featured on campus are great activities to join. The groups help promotes a sense of togetherness and family. As far as parents being involved, that could improve. If there are any problems with the students, it's because parents don't show enough interest in the academic lives of the students. Too often parents are showing up at sports events and too little at parent/ teacher conference.

- submitted by a student

March 10, 2006
I am a current student at Southwest Dekalb. There is an extensive amount of disruption here, specifically fights and rudeness. Many of the administrators at my school care nothing about the students' future. It seems like they come to work to just get a paycheck, instead of trying to make an impact on the lives of others, which is what I thought was their job. Our current principal is like William Taft after Theodore Roosevelt's presidency: inadequite for the job started by his predecessor. Our last principal, Mr. Bradshaw, showed a high level of concern for the students. The security team is....alright. Despite all of these things, there is some good here. I am in the magnet program, where I take an AP class, and my teachers are good, specifically Ms. Gaddy and Mr. Maple. Extra-curricular activities are one of the best. Parents seem to be involved.

- submitted by a student

February 27, 2006
As a magnet alum, I may not know everyone's experience. My instructors did prepare well enough to attend and complete Ga Tech, but I also had a very involved parent who made sure that what needed to happen did. Truly from my experience the counselors were not conserned about the needs of students on the college track (only those who were in jeopardy of not graduating). There were many extracurriculars to partake in that can help make your child well rounded and if not you can create a club or organization. There was a pride of most attending the school even with such detrements. My peers did go to schools like spellman and morehouse, yale and harvard but this is also because they themselves were driven to succeed.

- submitted by a student

February 20, 2006
SWD is a terrible and dangerous high school to attend. The gangs have taken over the whole school and the administration won't admit they have a gang problem, so it all gets swept under the rug.They walk around and pacify the trouble makers out of fear and punish the students who are just trying to survive. If you want to see your child graduate or alive, don't send them to SWD.

- submitted by a parent

July 07, 2005
I'm in the magnet program and I took AP this year; I think the AP and Magnet Program are the best programs the school has going aside from sports. The band is good and so are most of the sports teams because they have been nationally recognized, but I think there is a poor emphasis on academics at the school. The school is going through renovations, which has made last year really difficult for everyone because it is very overcrowded and the security treats the students bad as if we are all out to start trouble. Parental involvement is mostly centered around sports. I think it is on the lower edge of education in South Dekalb County and should be looked at twice.

- submitted by a student

March 23, 2005
Southwest DeKalb High is a great school. We have a Magnet Program and we are number one in the nation for AP History test scores. Our band is the greatest, not only having being recognised by being invited to New York, but also being a great accomplice for the hit movie Drumline, in which our school was also the site of. I myself, as well as others are in a great science program. We are currently reconstructing, and by the time they are finished our school will be awed by many, having a great interior and exterior and having more classrooms!

- submitted by a student

February 20, 2005
Swd isn't just known for their excellent football team & band. Swd achieved a great height of notoriety when its advance placement students in history taught by jim bailey & raymond maple posted test scores that made swd #1 in the nation in u.S. History. Swd is going through some changes right now because the school is being renovated. As a result some halls are closed which causes more traffic inside & outside the building due to the needed detours. Swd is improving though by now we have a spring semester after-school grade recovery program for students who didn't do so well in the fall semester of the 2004-2005 school year. However we do need to improve our security & parent involvement a little due to the tight budget issue. Our extracurricular programs are football,basketball, track,tennis,soccer,softball,baseball,volleyball,golf,swimming,wrestling,cross country,gymnastics,njrotc,art-club,debate-team,math-team,national-beta-club,national-honor-society,drama-club,environmental-awareness-club,international-club,yearbook,the-prowler(newspaper),paw-prints(literary magazine),future-health-care-professionals,future-business-leaders- of-america,bold(brothers-of-leadership-distinction),lod(ladies-of-distinction),inspirational voices, and etc. Overall this swd is good school which is improving.

- submitted by a student

January 21, 2005
Southwest deklab has many things to offer a student if they are willing to search for it. Many things are kept in the dark at swd. Not that its a bad thing but if you not a outgoing/outspoken person then you will be lost in the shuffle or stuck with nothing to do. The band is the best in the land...Really it is. I love swd. Here you see a lot of parent/teacher/student involvment. Great academics adds to the excalence here. Many people think that we are just here to maintain good sports and other activities...Not true!!! and this is coming from a student. There are so many that are offerd scholarhips (magnet and non-magnet). I love swd and i am really glad that i mad swd my high school choice!

- submitted by a student

December 20, 2004
Southwest Dekalb is an excellent school for Football and Band. The schools fall short on everything else. There is not for the student who wants to do well and prepare for College, outside of sports. The school does not offer one computer programing class. However, you can take four years Microsoft Word. If you are into getting a good education, this not the place for you. If sports is what you are after then this the MIT of the south.

- submitted by a parent

August 27, 2004
I think SouthWest DeKalb High School is great. It has a wonderful learning environment and the teachers actually put their effort into helping the students learn. They also have a tremendous variety of extra-currlicular activites. Their band is amazon and the physical sports have an awsome standing. To be honest, I think I am going to keep all my children at this school until they graduate. SouthWest also have alot of scholar ships giving to many of thier students, academiaclly and with the sports. So I am ending it like this, SouthWest is the best for an all around learning and socially environment.

- submitted by a student

June 19, 2004
One of the best kept secrets in DeKalb County is the magnet program at Southwest DeKalb High School. The academic results from this program speak for themselves with 100% of the students receiving the HOPE scholarships, many of the students nominated as National Achievement SemiFinalists and Finalists and competitive SAT scores. Most of the students go on to some of the premier colleges in Georgia and across the country. Academics, outstanding band and superior athletics makes Southwest DeKalb an excellent choice.

- submitted by a parent

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Last modified: October 30, 2014

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Southwest Dekalb High School
2863 Kelley Chapel Rd, Decatur, GA  30034
(678) 874-1902
Last modified Southwest Dekalb High School is a Public school that serves grades 9-12. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 4 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Southwest Dekalb High School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 44 reviews. Top